Jonathan Hickman has been teasing his plans for the X-Men since his takeover of the line was announced at C2E2. Before Marvel reveals its Dawn of X news at Saturday’s “Next Big Thing” panel, Hickman previewed his multi-year plan for the X-Men, to reinvent and reinvigorate Marvel’s mutant comics in an exclusive for Entertainment Weekly.
“I have some general philosophies on what kind of work you should do at Marvel, that I try and adhere to. I think the stories should be big,” Hickman told the outlet, in an interview published on Wednesday. “Any time you can mine your continuity and the existing continuity of the company in a way that evokes a response from audience and not confusion, that’s powerful, and you’re crazy not to utilize it when you’re writing these books. The cardinal rule beyond that is at the end of the day, after you’ve torn up the playroom and scattered all the toys, you put everything all back on the shelf. Don’t be an a—hole and leave a mess.”
He added, “You want to tell stories that matter, but the way you write things that matter in Marvel is that you’re not destructive, you’re additive. Yes, I may do things where I destroy the entire Marvel Universe, but I always put it back together, and in putting it together you add to it in a way that puts the characters in an interesting place and you haven’t ruined anybody else’s job.”
He also noted that he won’t be giving into archaeology or nostalgic tropes with House of X, which launches next week, and Powers of X, which launches the week after. Hickman said the former is set in the present, “inside the most pivotal period of time in the Marvel Universe,” while the latter deals with “mutants throughout the history of the Marvel Universe.”
“This is something I’ve been writing and rewriting in my head since I was a kid,” he told EW. “I’ve been in the kitchen for a long time with it. I get the ingredients, I get what makes a good meal.”
It’s unlikely that we’ll learn anymore from Hickman until his X-line debuts, and even then, he’ll probably keep things tightly under wraps. Whatever is to come, it sounds like this multi-year plan for the X-Men has been in the works for some time; hopefully, that means diverse creators, interesting stories, and a more cohesive presence for the X-Men in Marvel’s comic universe.
In the meantime, check out the preview featured on EW, including the cover art for House of X #6, and stay tuned for more news from Hickman and Marvel at SDCC ’19.